Ntshanga’s apocalyptic future festers in our dystopian past

Lifestyle

Ntshanga’s apocalyptic future festers in our dystopian past

‘Triangulum’ is a portrait of life over four decades from apartheid’s collapse to a troubled tomorrow

Staff reporter

The date is December 2043 and the SA National Space Agency has received a mysterious package containing a memoir and a set of digital recordings from an unnamed woman who says the world will end in 10 years. Dr Naomi Buthelezi is hired to investigate the authenticity of the materials and the writer’s claim.

Masande Ntshanga’s latest novel is bizarre, in a good way. One of the most inventive and exciting writers in SA today, he uses the device of the found manuscript to frame Triangulum, a multi-genre tale that encompasses historical narrative, coming-of-age tale and science fiction, with a hint of the dystopian thrown in for good measure. Even Edenvale gets a mention.

The story unfolds over 40 years, beginning with the collapse of apartheid’s bantustan system in the early 1990s, moving through the economic recession of the first decade of the 2000s, and ending with a glimpse of impending ecological disasters resulting from global warming...

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